Tulisan ini sudah dimuat dalam jurnal filsafat Dekonstruksi, Vol. 7(1), halaman 53-92 (Juli – September 2022).
The fear of death and the longing for immortality have long been discussed in religion and philosophy.
Unfortunately, there are still very few cross-disciplinary and multi-perspective social sciences that examine both mortality and immortality in a single book (monograph).
Reflecting the views of Zygmunt Bauman in Mortality, Immortality, and Other Life Strategies (1992), the author offers a reconstruction of
Bauman’s thinking about the concept of modernity in relation to the issue of mortality and the concept of postmodernity in relation to the issue of immortality.
As modernity deconstructs the big issue of mortality into a number of problems that can be handled, so postmodernity deconstructs the issue of immortality into six problem-based models, such as the problem of fluid identity as a self-constitutional project, fame in fashion and celebrity, the idea of repetition and representation, games and spectacle, the ultimate chain of momentary pleasures, as a strategy of social stratification, and as an affirmation of identity and authority in the community.
The strategy of deconstruction of immortality emancipates the subject from the shackles of space-time (history, discourse, ideology, etc.), enables people to achieve what in principle impossible to reach here and now, but at the same time creates a new kind of for injustice, highlights the primacy of an ontic entity over an ethical one, and produces new group of victims.
In a more contemporary context, new ways to deconstruct immortality have shifted from the world of entertainment to the realm of technology, but the idea of immortality has been stripped of its sacred aura and is constantly being made profane and commodified.
Immortality is one of a number of objects of desire available in the market and can be purchased with money.
However, the desire to be immortal continues to be craved and strived to be realized here and now, whether with the help of an anti-aging serum, by uploading traces of identity and consciousness in a smart machine driven by personalized artificial intelligence, to record and digitize, or with cryonics technology, the opportunities and oppositions persist.
Keywords: deconstruction, modernity, postmodernity, mortality, immortality, history, identity, social theory.